Schools to be closed from March 15 in several cities due to COVID-19 outbreak: Shafqat Mehmood

Schools to be closed once again from 15th March Monday, to 28th March following a spike in covid-19 cases. 

On Wednesday, Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood announced that schools to be closed in many cities from Monday as the coronavirus cases are again increasing in Punjab and KPK. The federal minister, while addressing the media at the National Command and Operations (NCOC) said that educational institutes will remain closed in Islamabad and other Punjab cities from Monday for two weeks. 

Shafqat Mehmood announced, “All educational institutions in Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Lahore, Gujrat, Multan, Rawalpindi and Sialkot will remain closed from March 15 till 28,” he added that the closure will be counted as a spring break. 

Meanwhile, Dr. Faisal Sultan, The SAPM on Health also spoke to the media. He also talked about the extended ban on indoor activities and reimpose the 50% work-from-home policy.  

Read More: Co-curricular activities banned in Punjab schools

The country’s apex COVID-19 body took the following decisions: 

  • Strict compliance with mask-wearing will continue across the board. 
  • Smart lockdowns/micro smart lockdowns will continue to be imposed based on disease prevalence/hotspots. 
  • 50% work from home policy will be implemented at the discretion of federating units. However, it will be enforced in Islamabad with immediate effect. 
  • The time limit of 10:00 pm on all commercial activities will be re-enforced with immediate effect, less essential services. 
  • Amusement parks across the country will be closed at 6:00 pm. 
  • The earlier decision of allowing indoor weddings, indoor dining and the opening of cinemas and shrines with effect from 15th March 21 has been withdrawn. However, outdoor dining/take away will continue to remain open as per previous practice. 
  • Outdoor gatherings will continue to remain limited to a maximum of 300 individuals with strict enforcement of COVID-19 SOPs. 
  • A review of all enforced NPIs will be carried out on April 12, 2021. 
  • The above-mentioned decisions regarding NPIs are base-line decisions. Federating units are at liberty to impose stricter NPIs in selected Cities/Districts keeping in view the local disease trend/spread. 

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